06/14/2006

This proposed strategy paper for a Provincial Household Hazardous Waste and Special Waste Strategy has been prepared by members of the Waste Management Task Force of the AMO and AMRC.
AMO’s position paper on household hazardous and special waste (HHW/HSW) has been met with resoundingly positive responses from the Association’s members.

The paper went to the AMO Board of Directors on June 23rd 2006, where it was unanimously approved.

The Honourable Laurel Broten, Minister of the Environment, announced on April 20, 2006, that she will be designating HHW/HSW in the near future. The Province is currently consulting with the public on the draft regulations with a deadline of July 10th. In anticipation of the Minister’s designation, AMO, through its AMO/AMRC (Association of Municipalities of Ontario / Association of Municipal Recycling Coordinators) Waste Management Task Force, has developed a position paper on the management of this waste. The AMO/AMRC Proposal for a Provincial Household Hazardous Waste and Special Waste Strategy was approved by AMO’s Board of Directors on June 23rd. The paper has received considerable support from AMO members across the Province. Councils in over 80 municipalities responded to the paper with resolutions of full support. Currently, resolutions are still coming forward.     

AMO believes that in order to meet its goals of designating HHW/HSW, the Province must provide clear direction in respect of the following:  

  • Recognition that HHW/HSW is a public health and safety issue and that municipalities have a vested interest in an effective HHW/HSW management system, as it transcends all environmental boundaries due to its potential impacts on air, soil, municipal landfills, water, storm drains, sanitary sewers and waste water treatment facilities;
  • Recognition that the principles of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) and Design for the Environment (DfE) place the responsibility for product residuals and packaging on industry;
  • Industry funding to operate, maintain and expand, as needed, HHW/HSW collection infrastructure and public education programs;
  • Utilize the CSA HHW standard and specify a short list of HSW that includes latex paints and coatings, oil containers, oil filters, propylene glycol, alkaline batteries and pharmaceuticals, and to further stage in residentially generated used motor oil as part of the overall program; 
  • Recognize that the current municipal level of service offered across Ontario is varied and that it cannot be reduced but must be improved to an acceptable standardized provincial level of service, to be determined in association with municipalities and industry;
  • Require industry to fund and establish HHW/HSW related research that provides scientific and verifiable data that can be used to further enhance the system for uniform program delivery for all residents across Ontario;
  • Support industry in its efforts for reduction, reuse and reformulation initiatives via eco-labelling, procurement, outreach and education programs;
  • Empower Waste Diversion Ontario (WDO) by ensuring that it has sustainable funding, full authority to develop an HHW/HSW program and the necessary policy and approval support from the Minister of the Environment.